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In Turkey Halkbank Civil Suit By Iran Terrorism Victims Now Appeal of Judge Berman Cited

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon, Thread Video
Honduras - The Source - The Root - etc

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Jan 1 – Turkey's Halkbank officially gave up its strategy of refusing to official appear in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York criminal case against it, and on February 25 appeared and agreed to be indicted. Inner City Press live tweeted it here, and below.

  Since August 21 Inner City Press has been looking into a civil case against Halkbank in the SDNY, for the bank's "arm in arm" work with Iran. That's from a sealed complaint, for which the Gibson Dunn law firm was SDNY Judge J. Paul Oetken for additional time to serve Halkbank under the Hague Convention. It was granted by SDNY Judge Denise L. Cote.

On August 21, yet more names were added to the case.  The plaintiffs are individuals who are direct victims and surviving family members of the Embassy Bombings, Beirut Bombing, Jerusalem Bombing Atzmona Attack, 2003 Bus Bombing and two related attacks on U.S. service members serving in Iraq.

 The complaint says Halkbank acquired its Iranian accounts in 2004, when it merged with Pamuk Bank, a Turkish bank with long-standing ties to Iran. The plaintiffs are suing for rescission of fraudulent conveyances, and under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act. The schedule is on Patreon here.

And now on December 30, Halkbank's lawyers wrote to Judge Cote about their fight with "another district court" - that is, Judge Richard M. Berman: "James Owens, et al., v. Turkiye Halk Bankasi A.S., a/k/a “Halkbank”, No. 20cv02648 Dear Judge Cote:  We represent Defendant Turkiye Halk Bankasi A.S. (“Halkbank”) in the abovereferenced case. Plaintiffs’ letter of December 28, 2020, restates that they agree oral argument would be appropriate on Defendant’s motion to dismiss. See ECF No. 74; ECF No. 73 (Halkbank’s letter motion, noting Plaintiffs’ agreement in request for oral argument). Plaintiffs further state in their letter that they “object” to Halkbank’s submission of supplemental declarations in support of its reply memorandum, although they add that they will be prepared to address the declarations at oral argument. ECF No. 74. There is nothing improper or unusual about filing declarations to address new arguments or information presented in an opposition brief, including declarations that provide the court with previously undisclosed information that speaks to an opposing declarant’s objectivity and candor. The supplemental declarations serve those purposes, as explained in Halkbank’s reply brief. ECF No. 69 at 10 & nn.6–8. Halkbank also wishes to update the Court on a procedural matter discussed in the motion to dismiss briefing. In its reply brief, Halkbank noted that it had filed an interlocutory appeal from the decision of another district court that had denied the bank’s motion to dismiss the criminal indictment on sovereign-immunity grounds. ECF No. 69 at 5 n.4. On December 23, in the order that Plaintiffs’ letter references, the Second Circuit granted Halkbank’s motion to stay the district court proceedings in the criminal case pending Halkbank’s interlocutory appeal, and  ordered expedited briefing. United States v. Zarrab, No. 20-3499, 2d Cir. ECF No. 49.1  In a separate order, the Second Circuit set a schedule under which briefing will be completed by March 17, 2021. Zarrab, No. 20-3499, 2d Cir. ECF No. 50. Halkbank maintains its position that the district court’s decision in the criminal case has limited relevance here. See ECF No. 69 at 1, 5 & n.4. Nevertheless, Halkbank provides this information because it was not available when the reply brief was filed.  Respectfully submitted, John S. Williams."

 This case is Owens et al. v. Halbank,
20-cv-02648 (Cote).


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